Spring has finally (!) sprung here in the UK! In fact, we seem to have gone from the depths of winter (i.e. blinded by actual snow in March) to the height of summer (i.e. blinded by pasty topless men everywhere you look) in about 3 days… The prospect of seemingly skipping an entire season has sent the British public into overdrive, and everywhere you look there’s noisy outdoor DIY, frantic lawnmowering and desperate dragging of barbeques out of the shed. Every shop is sold out of burger buns and Strongbow Dark Fruits, and if you think you’re going to get a seat in the beer garden you’ve probably had one too many glasses of Pimms (although – in this weather it’s illegal not to).
But enough about that; I’ve been trying out some new makeup products over the last couple of months (mainly to distract myself from the depressing weather) and I’m pleased to announce I’ve found some actual GEMS.
Read on to find out my top 5 picks you should be adding to your spring makeup bag! P.S. – they’re mostly super affordable too…
W7 Night Glow
Now I might be on my own over here, but the perfect highlighter application for me is totally undetectable until the light hits it – and then, BAM! HI!! I CAN SEE YOU FROM THE MOON, HONEY!!! Don’t get me wrong – I’ve bought my share of crazy coloured highlights (I’ve got at least 3 green ones) which I’ll happily wear to the office, but I think for most people, that’s a little too out there for everyday.
Anyway, I live to please, which is why I’ve chosen one that will work for most people – W7’s Night Glow is a neutral-toned champagne liquid highlighter that’s very similar to Benefit’s High Beam (except for the price tag – you can pick up the W7 version for less than £3). I don’t reach for either pink or gold highlighters very often, but champagne? Girl give me that all day long – it goes with everything, and can look natural and in-your-face at the same time (an aesthetic I strive for in most circumstances).
This product is great to apply over foundation – I just use a blending sponge to blend it onto my cheekbones, brow bone, tip of the nose and cupid’s bow before I apply powder – or you can even mix in a little with your foundation if you’d like more of an all-over glow. Combine it with the next product on the list, and you’ll have the kind of spring glow that only comes from drinking 3 litres of water a day (and I mean, who has the time to pee that much?)
Natural Collection Hydrating + Radiance Primer
I’ve always been a matte primer girl but I felt like changing it up this year – so I’d been on the hunt for a good hydrating primer for a while. I only picked this up because I wanted to repurchase their mascara when they had a 3 for 2 offer on – and MY GOD did I find a gem!
I’ve been using this guy religiously, and it’s perfect for getting that lit-from-within glow – even under full coverage foundation. It’s hydrating, not sticky, dries down quickly and gives a lovely champagne sheen. It also lasts well throughout the day and I haven’t noticed it reducing wear time compared to my matte primers – in fact it probably wears better as it stops me getting dry patches. I’ve tried this with all my foundations, and it even gives the same effect under my trusty Revlon Colorstay.
It’s so bomb – out of all the products in this post, this is my top recommendation, both due to the price point (it’s only £2.99) and the great effect it gives. But please don’t buy them all before I go back to Boots and buy out the entire stand, ahem.
Makeup Revolution Radiant Lights Powder in Breathe
Before I get into this product, prepare for disappointment – you can’t currently buy this product in the single compact form I have, as it’s no longer available on the Revolution Beauty website. However – it’s still available in the palette form, with a bronzer (also good) and a highlighter, for £8.
This product is Revolution Beauty’s homage to the Hourglass Ambient Lighting Powders – not something I’ve ever fancied springing the money for, since they come with a price tag of £40 each. Revolution’s version retailed for £5, but I snagged this guy during a sale for just £3.
I’d describe this as a finishing powder with a gentle sheen – I don’t find it glittery, it just gives a natural glow to the skin. It also helps to lift a super-matte foundation and inject some of that lit-from-within glow (clearly a look I’m enjoying right now) and doesn’t look cakey at all.
One thing I would say is that it can make your foundation look a little darker – however that means this product is a life-saver on days I’ve applied a too-pale foundation! It makes the shades blend in with my skin much more seamlessly than a colourless powder would (which is what I usually use).
Rimmel Brow This Way Brow Styling Gel
It’s sacrilege, but I’ve stopped reaching for my Freedom Brow Pomade in favour of this little guy. I do have fairly bushy eyebrows anyway (yes, I’m blessed in that department, but also in the neck hair department – you win some, you lose some) but not quite bushy enough to feel comfortable leaving them naked. This product gives them the right amount of definition without making them look false – I feel like a more natural brow goes a lot better with the lit-from-within glow aesthetic I’ve been going for. It also holds them in place all day without feeling all crispy and weird. Not bad for under a fiver!
I like the brush too – it’s the right size for my brows and doesn’t make a mess on application! I do find a bit too much product collects around the end of the wand – but I just wipe this off on the neck of the tube before application.
Helena Rubinstein Lash Queen Feline Black Waterproof
This guy is a little outside my usual price range – it was a Christmas gift from my brother and his girlfriend Maomao (thanks guys!) and was delivered with an adamant “all the rich Chinese girls use this”. I have to say – the rich Chinese girls have good taste, because this is an excellent mascara.
This honestly ticks all the boxes for me; I want my mascara to lengthen and define my lashes, and add a little volume without giving me a spidery, sticky-out mess. I also want the brush to catch all my lashes without getting product everywhere, which usually means quite a small, skinny brush that doesn’t pick up too much product from the tube. This mascara fulfils all that, and not many do – so I’m impressed! As a bonus, it’s also easy to remove with an oil cleanser (if you think I’ll be using more than one product to remove my makeup at the end of the day, you’re sorely mistaken).
The one caveat I do have with this mascara is that it does transfer on me by the end of the day, leaving me with slightly unattractive panda eyes (despite supposedly being waterproof) but as I’ve found no other mascara that doesn’t transfer, I’ll let it off. Oh – and there’s the price tag – around £30 for the mascara alone, and not too easy to get hold of here in the UK! Though you can pick up the gift set I’ve got (which includes an eye cream and waterproof eye makeup remover) for about £35 on Amazon.
I hope you enjoyed my spring makeup picks! I’ve been in a funk with my photography but I really enjoyed shooting the photos for this post – I hope you love them as much as I do.
Have you got any spring makeup favourites? Leave me yours in the comments below so I can try them!
All of these products were bought by me (with the exception of the mascara, as mentioned). All opinions and thoughts on these products are my own. This post contains affiliate links.